Congratulations to SMS Standout Doug Fontenot. Doug was recently nominated for customer recognition, excellent performance and quality of work. While working at an Antero location, a contract worker collapsed and lost consciousness. Doug administered life-saving measures to revive the patient. The worker is doing fine and expected to make a full recovery. Excellent job, Doug. Thank you for your hard work and dedication!
We spoke to Doug about what a typical workday looks like for him.
A.A. Describe a typical day at work.
D.F. Typically, a day starts with an update of prior activities followed by planning any organizational meetings with all personnel to establish active protocols for the day. The day always entails potentially hazardous activities, challenges and interactions with a variety of personalities. The great reward is achieved when work and HSE awareness results in a safe, balanced and productive day for personnel with no harm to the environment or property. Coworkers always become like family members and it feels great to know that they have elevated their appreciation of their career and will return to their families healthy and safe while leaving the environment unharmed.
A.A.What was the best vacation you have ever taken?
D.F. In my work, I’ve traveled extensively throughout the USA from coast to coast, from Mexico to Canada. I love my work, and my life has been a series of enjoyable vacations. Vacations are difficult to judge; the worst I ever had was good. One experience does come to mind. A vacation in Niagara Falls, Canada was very, very nice.
A.A.Describe yourself in one sentence.
D.F. I am a loving husband, father, grandfather and friend.
A.A. What is your favorite thing about your job?
D.F. The favorite part of my job is being able to employ those things learned during my upbringing on a rice and cattle farm. Not so much the academics of industry, which anyone can learn in a classroom, but in being able to communicate with and appreciate every personality. I’ve been given the rare opportunity to keep improving conditions for workers and clients, even while they aren’t aware of the things we do behind the scenes.
A.A.What food could you live on for a month?
D.F. Beans, rice, vegetables and maybe smothered okra.
A.A. Do you have a side hustle, hobby, or volunteer group that you’re involved in outside of work? What else do you spend your time doing?
D.F. Outside of work, I enjoy being a member of the Knights Of Columbus. I also do chattel appraisal and inspection as a side business. My hobby is pursuing my love of aviation, being in the Light Sport Aviation class of fliers. However, my most enjoyable hobby is gardening.
A.A. How do you stay motivated at work?
D.F. My work and my connection with the great people on the job are my motivation.
A.A. What has been the most fulfilling moment in your career so far?
D.F. My career fulfillment cannot be described as a moment but as a lifelong process.
A.A. Who would play you in a movie?
D.F. Rowan Atkinson aka Mr. Bean.
A.A. Tell us about a moment that changed your life.
D.F. Aside from the birth of my children and grandchildren, the return of the first space shuttle, Columbia was a great inspiration. It provided a pivotal sense of pride and accomplishment for our nation. This gave me a new optimism toward myself and humanity in general.
A.A. What would be your advice for future [safety professionals]?
D.F. Never lose track of your compass. Always remember the reason that you are here. It isn’t for yourself or selfish interests; it’s for the elevation of the human condition.
A.A. What is your favorite activity outside of work?
D.F. I really enjoy developing my farmland and growing a garden. I spent my early years on a farm. Some of my best self-therapy comes from driving a tractor all day. We make a family activity of taking care of the place.
A.A. Name one book that inspired you professionally.
D.F. The Book Of Tobit. It lets us know the lengths that our creator will go in order to direct us to where we need to be. To me, this gives deep purpose and inspiration in my profession.
A.A. Which talent or superpower would you most like to have and why?
D.F. Time travel. I’d love to meet my grandfather that I never knew.
A.A. What was the best advice you were ever given?
D.F. Don’t think about how hard the race is, think how welcoming the finish line will be.
A.A. Do you have a bucket list? What are the top 3 things on it?
D.F. 1. To tour the east and west coasts again, except this time with my family.
- To see my descendants each succeed.
- To develop my own organic farm.
A.A. Do you have any pets? What are their names?
D.F. Max, Shadow, Persia and Tai-Tai.
A.A. A penguin walks through the door right now wearing a sombrero. What does he say and why is he here?
D.F. I knew I should’ve turned left in Albuquerque.